Earlier (May 2022): Great Replacement Or Affirmative Action Gone Mad: California Highway Patrol To Hire Illegals?
It’s a truism that when an expert sees something in the news related to his area of expertise, that something will typically be wrong. Well, I’m an expert on immigration, and I can attest that truism is true. USA Today’s Fact Check Fellow, Hannah Hudnall (right), got the facts wrong when she checked the claim that illegal aliens can become cops in California. Hudnall [Email her]said they can’t. She’s wrong. They can.
Let’s be clear about one thing: My beef with Hudnall isn’t personal. Nor does it concern what I believe to be her Leftist position on immigration policy. If she wants Open Borders, or believes illegal aliens should be Amnestied, so be it. But she still is obliged to get the facts straight when she writes about immigration. That requires at least a basic familiarity with immigration in general and immigration law in particular.
#FactCheck “The post is false," @RobertGammon, a spokesperson for @NancySkinnerCA, told @USATODAY in an email. "#SB960 only allows noncitizen residents w/full federal legal work authorization to become police officers in CA." #CaLeg https://t.co/tzPukOFVun— Jessica Bartholow (she/her) (@Jess_Bartholow) February 23, 2023
In many cases, immigration reporters simply repeat claims from open borders advocates and ethnic and Treason lobbyists. Or maybe they consult Wikipedia, which is notoriously controlled by Leftist editors. Few consult a source that contradicts their preconceived ideas on immigration.
Hudnall was not one of those few when she wrote about California’s SB 960:
The claim: Those in the country illegally can be police officers in California
A Feb. 8 Instagram video shows a woman speaking about a new law in California.
“(California Gov. Gavin Newsom) just signed into law that those with driver's licenses can apply to be police officers,” says the woman.
“Illegals can now become police officers,” reads part [of] the post’s caption. “You can’t make this up.”
The video garnered more than 13,000 likes in less than two weeks.
Our rating: False.
The law referenced in the post applies to non-citizens with work authorization, such as asylum-seekers and refugees. It doesn't allow people who immigrated illegally to become police officers, according to a spokesperson for the law's author.
[Fact check: False claim that those in country illegally can become police officers in California, February 20, 2023]
And if you go to the linked post on Instagram, you’ll see this:
You will be able to click through to see the video, however—it hasn’t been taken down, just lied about.
Hudnall also inquired of the bill’s sponsor, state Senator Nancy Skinner.
More great news! The CA Assembly Appropriations Committee today approved #SB960 on a 12-4 vote. SB 960 would diversify CA law enforcement agencies by allowing noncitizens with full federal work authorization to be peace officers. #CALeg— Nancy Skinner (@NancySkinnerCA) June 22, 2022
It's now on to the Assembly Floor.
She was assured that the law will not allow illegals to become cops.
“The post is false,” a spokesman for Skinner told Hudnall. “SB 960 only allows noncitizen residents with full federal legal work authorization—not undocumented immigrants—to become police officers in California.”
The state’s Legislative Council told her the bill “require(s) peace officers be legally authorized to work in the United States.”
Hudnall helpfully listed her sources, which, amusingly, included fact checks from other fact checkers at Reuters, Lead Stories, and The Associated Press:
But here’s what neither Hudnall nor her other sources know, including (apparently) the senator who sponsored the bill: Not all aliens with employment authorization are aliens legally present in the United States.
That will come as a shock to Hudnall and the Fact Checking Fraternity, but it won’t shock those who are conversant with the issues. If Hudnall had read VDARE.com, she would have known that an Employment Authorization Document does not turn an illegal alien into a legal alien.
The proposed California legislation is deliberately vague, not mentioning alienage or legal status. It merely requires that peace officers be legally authorized to work in the United States:
Each class of public officers or employees declared by law to be peace officers shall meet all of the following minimum standards:
(a) Be legally authorized to work in the United States under federal law
[Senate Bill No. 960, California Legislative Information, October 3, 2022]
Nothing in the proposed legislation states that a person employed as a peace officer, if not a citizen, must also be an alien lawfully present in the United States.
The question Hudnall should have asked, but apparently didn’t, was this: Can illegal aliens work in the United States legally?
Note also Hudnall’s using “non-citizen” to describe illegals, although neither the legally-correct term “alien,” nor the legally inaccurate term “non-citizen,” are in the proposed legislation. Indeed, “non-citizen” is not a term one finds in federal immigration law at all. But Treason Lobbyists use it to avoid using “alien,” the proper term for persons who are not citizens or nationals.
I’d like to say that Hudnall isn’t merely ignorant of the facts and the law, but instead politically motivated and ideologically disposed to support open borders. But I won’t. Never ascribe to malice what can be explained by ignorance.
A real fact-checker would also have known, for instance, that Deferred Action For Childhood Arrivals [DACA], which included work authorization and was later overturned as illegal and unconstitutional, shattered the claim that illegal aliens cannot be hired under the proposed California legislation.
Here is what the Obama Regime’s Justice Department said about the immigration status of DACA recipients:
As has historically been true of deferred action, these proposed deferred action programs would not “legalize” any aliens who are unlawfully present in the United States: Deferred action does not confer any lawful immigration status, nor does it provide a path to obtaining permanent residence or citizenship. Grants of deferred action under the proposed programs would, rather, represent DHS’s decision not to seek an alien’s removal for a prescribed period of time.
[Memorandum Opinion For The Secretary Of Homeland Security And The Counsel To The President, by Karl L. Thompson, Justice.gov, November 19, 2014]
So DACA recipients are illegal aliens despite retaining employment authorization. Thus, they could become California peace officers under the Senator Skinner’s proposed legislation.
But it gets worse. There is classified and there is “classified,” as Barack Hussein Obama said when confronted with the Hillary Clinton email scandal [Obama On Clinton's Emails: ‘There's Classified, And Then There’s Classified’, CBS New York, April 10, 2016]. Similarly there are illegal aliens and there are “illegal aliens.”
The scare quotes describe illegal aliens whom the Biden Regime is illegally rewarding with parole and employment authorization. [Inside The Lawless Biden Regime Administrative Amnesty, FederaleFifthColumnist, January 31, 2022]. Those illegals, too, can be cops in California. Fact-checker Hudnall apparently didn’t know that, either.
Maybe she is in over her head, or thinks, like so many of her generation, that access to the internet means she can collect, review, and analyze information after 10 minutes on Google, then come to an informed opinion. She and her ilk do tend to think of themselves as experts because they expertly surf the Internet.
Journalists are supposed to question politicians and activists, not be transcriptionists for Open Borders advocates or any other Leftist pet project. Hudnall failed spectacularly. She’s a “fact-checker” and should be held accountable.
I humbly offer young Hudnall the opportunity to consult with me in the future. I am ready to help her become conversant on immigration law—and succeed as a fact-checker!
Hannah Hudnall: Feel free to email me when you need help: firstname.lastname@example.org
The blogger Federale (Email him) is a 4th generation Californian and a veteran of federal law enforcement, including service in the legacy Immigration and Naturalization Service, the Department of Homeland Security, and other federal law enforcement agencies.